Posted on April 6, 2020

Reviving Racial Preferences in the Golden State

Lloyd Billingsley, Frontpage Magazine, April 3, 2020

The University of California will relax undergraduate admissions requirements for students looking to enroll at UC for fall 2020 “and future years as applicable,” the office of the UC President announced this week.

“The COVID-19 outbreak is a disaster of historic proportions disrupting every aspect of our lives, including education for high school students, among others,” said University of California President Janet Napolitano.” UC Board of Regents chairman John Pérez expanded on that theme.

“We want to help alleviate the tremendous disruption and anxiety that is already overwhelming prospective students due to COVID-19,” said Pérez. “By removing artificial barriers and decreasing stressors – including suspending the use of the SAT – for this unprecedented moment in time, we hope there will be less worry for our future students.”

Description of the Scholastic Aptitude Test as an “artificial barrier,” would surprise the College Board, which administers the SAT, a proven objective measure of student achievement. For that reason, politically correct UC bosses have been seeking to junk it. As Saul Geiser of UC Berkeley’s Center for Studies in Higher Education said last year,  “If UC cannot legally consider the effect or race and segregation on test performance, neither should it consider SAT or ACT scores.” So the push to dump the SAT is all about race.

A lawsuit filed last year contends the SAT and ACT impede access to higher education for low-income students and students of color. The plaintiffs, Chinese for Affirmative Action, Little Manila Rising and the Dolores Huerta Foundation, want the UC to drop the SAT, and Pérez is exploiting the coronavirus crisis to dump the “artificial barrier.” This follows an attempt by Democrats to overturn the California Civil Rights Initiative (CCRI), Proposition 209 on the 1996 ballot, which eliminated racial and ethnic preferences in state education, employment and contracting.

Assembly Constitutional Amendment 5, the “California Act for Economic Prosperity,” by San Diego assemblywoman Shirley Weber and assemblyman Mike Gipson, reinstates those preferences. Before 1996, when voters passed Proposition 209 by a 54-46 margin, such measures were the rule.

The University of California at Davis twice rejected highly qualified Allan Bakke, a Vietnam veteran, in favor of lesser qualified minority candidates, for whom they had reserved 16 percent of the entering class. In 1978, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in Bakke’s favor, but California’s state universities continued to deploy a quota system of racial and ethnic preferences. It was blatant racial discrimination, based not on state or federal law, only on proportionality dogma.

In this view, all institutions must reflect the racial and ethnic proportions of the population. If not, the problem is assumed to be deliberate racial discrimination and the remedy must be a government imposed quota. The dogma fails to account for personal differences, effort and choice, and holds that  some groups are “overrepresented,” with “too many” of them on campus.

The California Civil Rights Initiative marked the first time American voters had their say on state-sponsored discrimination, but contrary to the establishment media, the measure did not eliminate “affirmative action.” The UC system, established to serve the top tier of California’s high-school graduates, could still provide financial aid and such, but could not discriminate against students on the basis of race and ethnicity.

UC president Janet Napolitano, a former Arizona governor and POTUS 44’s DHS boss, is already violating state law by granting $25.2 million in aid to students who were not even supposed to be in the country. The partisan Democrat, who got her start in the campaign to discredit Clarence Thomas, remained in office despite discovery of a $175 million slush fund. Napolitano now wants to axe the SAT and so does UC Board of Regents chair John Pérez, who also boasts a curious back story.

Rep. Hilda Solis, mayor Richard Riordan of Los Angeles, and Gov. Gray Davis all proclaimed John Pérez a graduate of UC Berkeley, the prize campus in the UC system. As Lance Williams of California Watch noted in 2011, Pérez was admitted to Berkeley 1987, most likely under a preference quota. He pursued a major in Chicano Studies, a non-discipline based on the racist tract La Raza Cosmica, by the late Mexican education minister Jose Vasconcelos.

In 1990, Pérez left UC Berkeley without graduating and took a job with the painters’ union. Official biographies and newspaper articles continued to proclaim Pérez a UC Berkeley grad, and he won election to the state Assembly in 2008, becoming Speaker the following year. Only then was Pérez exposed as “a Cal dropout, not grad,” as Williams’ story came headlined.

In 2014, years after the academic fraud was exposed, Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Pérez to the UC Board of Regents. The college dropout was never an academic or educator in any meaningful sense, but in May 2019 the University of California made Pérez chairman of the board. It was a purely political move, and progressive Democrats never let a crisis go to waste.

John Pérez and Janet Napolitano now exploit the pandemic to suspend the SAT, lower standards, and turn back the clock to the days of state-sponsored racial and ethnic discrimination.